The ChevronWP7 team announced today that it has discontinued its Windows Phone unlocking tool. The announcement followed a meeting with Brandon Watson, Director of Developer Experience for Windows Phone 7. The team behind ChevronWP7 reportedly had a frank discussion with Microsoft over state of homebrew app development and the controversy surrounding the ability to unlock a handset.
As a result of this discussion, the team agreed to pull its Windows Phone unlocker and wait for Microsoft to offer an official avenue for the development and deployment of homebrew applications. This decision to pull back may be the result of a heated argument over application piracy that erupted when the ChevronWP7 tool was released early last week. Critics of the tool incited a heated argument by claiming the unlocker could be used to facilitate application piracy. Though the developers behind ChevronWP7 refuted this claim, the PR damage was already done.
The tone of the blog post announcing the demise of the unlocking tool was hopeful. The team at ChevronWP7 seem optimistic that Microsoft will work with them to open up Windows Phone to developers and users alike. They also hint that they and the community at large may be able to shape the platform and make it more friendly to homebrew endeavors. The first step in this process is removing their tool from the public domain and coming to Microsoft with a clean slate. Fingers crossed that it all works out as being able to install non-marketplace apps is a definite plus in my book.
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